daisuki By daisuki, 1st Jun 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Essays

An essay about Mark Welson Chua, a student at the University of Sto. Tomas, in March 2001, who uncovered corruption in the ROTC corps and exposed it in The Varsitarian.

Remembering Mark Welson Chua

Obscured underneath the more scandalous stories in today's newspapers was the conviction of one of the four suspects in the brutal murder case of Mark Welson Chua. Not long after, the death of a member of the ROTC unit’s intelligence monitoring team of the University of Santo Tomas in 2001 triggered the proposal to abolish the program. His death is widely believed to be linked to the exposé of alleged corruption and irregularities in the ROTC unit of the UST.

Students now have an option whether to undergo military training or community service through the NSTP. The National Service Training Program is promulgated by Republic Act 9163 which was catalyzed to enactment by his death. Of course the NSTP does not fully address the military training they covet. The law requires undergraduates male or female to render personal, military or civil, service for the country.

This is one major reason why ROTC should not be made mandatory again. Just think of him; remember Chua in every way. He exposed the corruption hidden behind the ROTC program. He paid extremely for his courage and true sense of patriotism. His gruesome murder sparked the reform in that corrupt operation. On behalf of that, I am truly grateful for I enjoyed having the right to choose Civil Welfare Training Service (CWTS) as my NSTP. It involved me in activities contributing to community welfare, such as caring for the environment, public safety, health, sports, and entrepreneurship.

Undoubtedly, his death will be worthless if ROTC will once again be made obligatory. The cycle will just begin anew since the temptation of having too much power over a group of people might just be hard to resist. The future college students will be the ones affected by this. I also want them to obtain the benefit of having the right to decide what sort of service they want to render for the country. If they prefer to select ROTC, then that is their own prerogative, yet at least they are doing that in their own accord and will.

I can never dispute the fact that every Filipino has the responsibility to defend our Motherland. And beyond doubt, ROTC is the paramount training ground for it. There is nothing wrong with the program; it is just the malevolent agenda of the people behind it. In fact, through my years as a cadet in CAT during high school which is pertinently the same with ROTC, I have been taught numerous and valuable skills that is helping me to survive in the outside world. Among them is discipline. I also learned something that is very valuable for a Filipino which is Nationalism. Having these core values is important nowadays, especially with the nation’s tensions with China.

If incompetent officers will handle ROTC, which actually happened before, there would be no good products for no one will learn from bad experiences. Again, the program is good and beneficial, but still we need good men. For it would not be that good without excellent mannered people manning it. Changes should be put into practiced first that will make the students’ training holistic, values-oriented and suitable for social awareness and character growth especially that of the youth. Indeed, it is significant for the training is intended not only for us and fellow countrymen, but also in the fortification of our nation.


Nstp, Rotc

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author avatar daisuki
I am a product of my environment. A very kind and gentle person, given the situations I have been and all the people fate has presented me. I like who I am, and am proud of the woman I have become.

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